Intensity-modulated radiosurgery for childhood arteriovenous malformations

M. Fuss, B. J. Salter, J. L. Caron, D. G. Vollmer, T. S. Herman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Purpose. Presentation of intensity-modulated radiosurgery (IMRS) for the treatment of inoperable, complex shaped pediatric arterio-venous malformations AVM. Method. Between 03/99 and 11/04, IMRS was delivered to seven children aged six to 18 years. Prescribed minimum doses ranged from 17.5 to 20 Gy (median 18 Gy). Radiosurgery planning and delivery used a serial tomotherapeutic IMRT technique (Peacock IMRT, North American Scientific/Nomos, Cranberry Township, PA) over two to four couch angles. A linear accelerator attached binary multi-leaf collimator was used to generate pencil beams of 10 mm by either 8.5 or 4.0 mm. Treatment planning employed an inverse treatment planning optimization algorithm. Parameters submitted to the treatment planning system were: prescription dose (PD), volume of target allowed to receive less dose (standard 3%), minimum dose (0.5 Gy less than PD), and maximum dose (200% of PD). Planning system specific IMRS target and tissue types were selected to prioritize dose conformality over dose homogeneity. The prescription isodose encompassed at least 95% of the target volume. We calculated conformality (CI) and homogeneity indices (HI) to characterize the quality of IMRS plans, and summarized preliminary clinical outcomes. Findings. Target volumes ranged from 0.71 to 63.02 cm3 (median 13.8 cm3, 6/7 AVM larger than 10 cm3). Median CI was 1.07 (range 1.05 to 1.7) according to RTOG criteria. Median HI was 1.12 (range 1.09 to 1.23). During limited follow-up (median 32 months, range 5 to 53 months), two AVM completely obliterated at 19 and 22 months, and partial obliteration (>75%) was observed in three cases. No treatment-related side effects, other than acute nausea and temporary headaches interpreted as being associated with changes in cerebral blood distribution, were observed. Conclusions. IMRS can allow for highly conformal planning and delivery of radiosurgery radiation doses even if pediatric AVM target volumes are large and/or highly complex in shape. This technique has been seen to result in favorable preliminary outcomes, thus supporting future exploration of this technique in pediatric and adult patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1141-1149+1150
JournalActa Neurochirurgica
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • Arterio-venous malformation (AVM)
  • Dosimetric parameter
  • Intensity-modulated radiosurgery (IMRS)
  • Outcome
  • Pediatric AVM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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